Downton Abbey Prequel: In the Works?

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Oh, Julian Fellowes. We hope you understand the kind of uproar you just created.

Earlier this week, at the BAFTA Screenwriting Lecture, the Downton Abbey creator teased that he has "an idea of doing a prequel of the courtship between Robert and Cora."

Fellowes says the draw to such a project would be a focus on the "fascinating time when the Buccaneers were coming to England and marrying [aristocrats]."

Lord and Lady Grantham

How far along in this concept? Fellowes says he originally planned it as a novel, but believes ITV will adapt it for television.

"Cora was in love with him before they married, but as we know he only fell in love with her about a year after they married," the creator said of the basis for the proposed series. "He married her purely for the money. I think that is something he came to feel quite guilty about."

This, of course, raises the inevitable question for fans: Who ought to be play younger versions of Lord and Lady Grantham?

Downton Abbey Season 3, meanwhile, will premiere in the U.S. on January 6.

Matt Richenthal is the Editor in Chief of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter and on Google+.


Downton Abbey Quotes

Edith: Now you're happy again, you'll be nicer... for a while.
Mary: If that's what you feel, then why are you here?
Edith: Because, in the end, you're my sister and one day, only we will remember Sybil... or Mama or Papa or Matthew or Michael or Granny or Carson or any of the others who have peopled our youth... until, at last, our shared memories will mean more than our mutual dislike.

Anna, help me do battle with this monstrosity. It looks like a creature from the lost world.